Tolstoy - Beelzebub was on this planet until 1921. And he was struck with this, that Tolstoy, with no more knowledge than you and I, nevertheless got himself passed off as one of the writers of contemporary religion. He was, so Gurdjieff says, who knew him, a perfectly silly man.
Later on he gives an example of Tolstoy, though not naming him, who without any real knowledge of life or self became regarded as the author of a modern gospel. Gurdjieff knew Tolstoy, who was naive and self-ignorant.
Why do people believe Tolstoy’s gospel? Because we never verify by applying personal knowledge and effort. Why not? It involves effort of self-knowledge and consequent estrangement.
Tolstoy’s stories are accepted as having spiritual value, they have only psychological.
A.R. Orage - Commentary on "Beelzebubs Tales to his grandson"